Opening Keynote: Scientific Research Updates
(Opening Keynote) Dr. Dedi Meiri:
Dr. Mike Dixon: Standardizing the Profile of Medical Compounds in Cannabis Using Space Exploration Technology.
The Controlled Environment Systems Research Facility at the University of Guelph In Canada is among the world’s leading venues for research and technology development devoted to biological life support (ie. plants in space) for human space exploration. The requirements for high fidelity environment control for reliable and safe food production in space are among the most critical issues to resolve as food determines how far from Earth we can go and how long we can stay. These same plant production technologies have equally useful applications here on Earth, especially in the phyto-pharmaceutical field of medical cannabis. Like any plant, cannabis is a product of its environment within the limits of its genetic complement and, like any plant, the environmental context determines many attributes such as size, shape, colour, taste and complement of secondary metabolites such as THC and CBD. The prospect of raising cannabis to the status of a conventional pharmaceutical commodity requires breeding and horticultural management strategies, including environment control recipes, that ensure the standardization of the profile of medical compounds. Technologies that evolved in the life support requirements for space exploration will be discussed and demonstrated for their relevance in medical cannabis production.